In the beginning was the OPPO R-series. And all was at peace with the world wanting good value, performance and a little class. Enter the OPPO R17 Pro, and it’s a hell of a phone putting many flagships to shame.
Do you want?
The world’s fastest charging – 30 minutes and it is full. Got it!
Sexy new, non-boring colours – like Radiant Mist or Emerald Green. Got it!
A variable aperture camera that works in low light as well. Got it!
3D TOF camera that may just help clothes shopping online
A huge, huge I tell you, 6.4” AMOLED screen. Got it
One of the first using Qualcomm’s new 10nm 710high performance, AI enhanced, eight-core processor (uses same cores as the Qualcomm 845). Got it!
Don’t want to spend a fortune? At $899 you got it!
OPPO R17 Pro is an outright winner. But let’s do the review anyway to see if all that glistens is Emerald Green or Radiant in the Mist?
Review: OPPO R17 Pro Model CHP 1877
How we rate it on price
Mid to high $500-999
Value pre-paid <A$199
This sits in the upper-mid tier where competition from last years flagships like the Samsung S8, LG V30+and more traditionally dominate. These have things like Qi charging or Qualcomm’s 835 2017-18 flagship SoC. There is nothing wrong with buying these either – amazing value too.
But the OPPO is new tech. Added to what are two of the most attractive colours it stands up well against last year’s flagships.
There is also an OPPO R17 (Website here) for $699, and we will highlight some of the differences in this review.
Super VOOC USB-C to USB-C cable (required for fast charge)
USB-C earbuds and mic
Colour matched soft plastic bumper case
The first impression is svelte, Emerald Green (dark iridescent green) glass slab with a small top teardrop (no ugly notch), very narrow bezels and almost no chin. It has 91.5% screen-to-body-ratio.
Buy here – or you will regret it
The Model number is CPH1877 for the 6/128GB, dual SIM version.
From what we can find there are about a dozen variants for different countries and carriers. It is also sold elsewhere as an RX17 Pro.
We issue the standard warning that you must buy the genuine Model with Australian firmware as it works on all Australian Carrier LTE bands and can make a 000 emergency call without a sim.
Size: 6.4-inch (2280 x 1080 pixels), 402ppi, Full HD+
19.5:9, 24-bit colour
Notch: Small centre teardrop 91.5% S-T-B-R
Screen Protection: Gorilla Glass 6 and a pre-applied
Colour: 100% NTSC colour gamut
It is one of the largest AMOLED screens available. It is for people that use the phone as a primary onramp to internet and email. Despite its massive screen size, it is physically small. And at 402 ppi it is pin sharp.
We measured brightness at 455 nits – that is great for daylight readability although the screen is reflective. Contrast is infinite. It is nearly as good as the class leader Samsung Galaxy S9+ for daylight readability.
Colours are accurate, and there is an adjustment for Cooler, Default and Warmer as well as Night Shield (low blue light).
Gorilla Glass 6 is twice as resilient as the fifth generation and can survive 15 one-metre drops on to a rough surface.
The lower cost R17 shares the same display.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 710
2 x 2.2GHz Kyro 360
6 x 1.7Ghz Kryo 360
The Qualcomm 7xx series is to help the industry build smarter devices and keep below the magic $1000 sweet spot. That means the chip supports 4K video, screens, 2×2 MU-MIMO Wi-Fi AC, X15 LTE, Qualcomm Aqstic/aptX sound and much more.
Performance is very much like last years Qualcomm 835. But it has added a faster Adreno 616 GPU, faster Image Signal Processor (for the camera) and support for Android Neural NN or Hexagon Neural Network for on-device processing. All in a more power-efficient 10nm SoC that does not appear to suffer throttling when under load.
So it is quite a step above a Qualcomm 660 (20% better overall, 25% faster at web browsing, 15% faster at launching apps, 35% better graphics, 100% for AI) and a small step below the Qualcomm 845.
Geekbench 4 gives it 1823/5903 single/multi-core.
The standard R17 has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 Octa Core.
Wi-Fi AC, dual-band, 2 x 2 MU-MIMO
USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 5Gbps
As expected it was 867Mbps at two metres from our reference D-LinkAC-5300 router, and it held that to 4 metres. It then gradually dropped until 2.4GHz took over at 30 metres. OPPO knows how to make an antenna.
BT 5.0 supports SBC by default. Hidden under Bluetooth Audio Codec, you can enable Bluetooth AVRCP 1.6. It then allows you to change the SBC (default) to AAC, aptX, aptX HD, and LDAC. You can also get 32-bit/96kHz sound as well.
No 3.5mm audio jack
ANC dual mics
Qualcomm Asqtics and aptX
The small downwards-firing speaker delivers some upper-bass, extremely good mids and treble falls off from 10kHz. It is a mid-signature that allows substantial adjustment (in headsets anyway) for bass or bright vocal.
Ringtone reached 82dB – you will hear this. Voice (handsfree) topped 70dB and music 73dB. It is what we have come to expect from OPPO’s audio heritage.
It uses Qualcomm’s Aqustic audio technology and has a Real Original Sound Technology EQ that requires a headset plugged in where it makes a reasonable difference adding +/-12dB to bass, mid-range and treble.
A live Karaoke setting allows you to use a BT mic and hear yourself in the buds.
We tried the device with a pair of Sony WH-100XM3 headphones that support Hi-Res aptX HD and LDAC.
Under-glass Fingerprint sensor <.5 seconds GPS and e-compass
There have been some comments that the under-glass fingerprint sensor can be unreliable if you add multiple fingerprints. We did not find that at all.
Two batteries each with a capacity of 1,850mAh for a combined equivalent of 3,700mAh Super VOOC (needs the charger and ‘yellow’ tongue USB-C cable). Quick charge rating: 93% in 30 minutes
Carrying a power bank is obsolete because OPPO has Super
VOOC – 30 minutes to charge. Even 10 minutes will give you 40%.
The downside is that it must use the charger else a standard 5V/2A will take over five hours.
Geek Bench exhausted the phone at 100% load in 640 minutes. That is amazing.
I have one gripe – the charger is too wide for typical Australian wall sockets or power board – it takes two spaces.
The standard R17 has a 3,500mAh battery and standard VOOC.
Dual Both can be 4G VOLTE, and you can set different ringtones
VoLTE and VoWiFi depends on the carrier
Colour US 5.2
Android 8.1 – Android 9 is coming soon.
Colour OS 5.2 is its User Interface, and it is increasingly getting ‘lighter’. It is necessary for the Chinese audience where Google services may not be available – so it includes OPPO variants of all Google apps.
Radiant Mist, Emerald Green
Fog Gradient design on the back that shifts from Deep Blue to Purple in the
Radiant Mist colour
Gorilla Glass 6 front and back over an aluminum frame. Slippery – use the bumper case
157.6 × 74.6 × 7.9mm, 183 grams
OPPO’s R17 Pro is well made with local service in Australia.
The standard R17 has three-gradient metallic-blue or purple. It is 157.5 × 74.9 × 7.5mm, 182 grams
No notification LED – more than compensated by the AOD
IP rating (although OPPO state its rainproof)
No deal breakers
Rear Camera 1
1.2 MP f/1.5-2.4, 26mm (wide) 1/2.55″, 1.4µm dual
pixel PDAF, OIS, LED flash [email protected] video recording with stereo sound.
Dual aperture switching between f/1.5 and f/2.4 results in better low light shots.
The third camera is Time-of-Flight (TOF) that emits nanosecond bursts of infrared light to get accurate depth information and increased detail in photos. According to OPPO, it can be for 3D scans as well as space mapping for AR (augmented reality) functionality. There is no software for this yet, but the potential for 3D mapping (of your body shape for example) augers well for online shopping.
HDR mode uses RAW photo data that results in a much cleaner and richer final image.
Camera summary: Amazing and performs well above its price tag would indicate.
Amazing colours, verging on saturated, full detail and sharpness. I had to look twice at my reference shots as HDR recovers details I had forgotten were there.
AI mode brightened the shot – whether it was needed or not!
Indoors Office Light
Amazing detail and perfect colours
Two things help low light. First, OIS that every camera should have. It allowed longer exposures without blur. Second, the variable aperture (and big pixels) kicked in producing one of the best, if not the best, indoor, no light shots I have ever seen.
Ultra-Night Mode that lets HDR do its stuff.
It is a top-notch (forgive the pun) selfie with 25MP and a set of AI-driven dedicated beauty mode. Intelligent facial beautification will give you a facelift, enhancing your makeup as well as eight other real-time adjustments — great for dating sights.
However, it is fixed focus, so you need to take shots at arm’s length to really get good ones.